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GRACE Level 1B Data Product

User Handbook

Kelley Case
Gerhard Kruizinga
Sien-Chong Wu

March 24, 2010

Jet Propulsion Laboratory


California Institute of Technology

JPL D-22027

GRACE Level 1B Data Product


User Handbook

1 INTRODUCTION ...................................................................................................................................1

1.1 Handbook Purpose .............................................................................................. 1


1.2 Handbook Overview ............................................................................................ 1
1.3 Purpose of the GRACE Level 1B data............................................................... 2
1.4 Document reference and contributors ............................................................... 2
1.5 Conventions .......................................................................................................... 2
Units ....................................................................................................................................................2
GPS Time............................................................................................................................................3
Coordinate Systems ...........................................................................................................................3
Data Quality Flags .............................................................................................................................4
Default Values ....................................................................................................................................5
Byte Order..........................................................................................................................................5
Bit Fields Order .................................................................................................................................5

1.5.1
1.5.2
1.5.3
1.5.4
1.5.5
1.5.6
1.5.7

1.6 Applicable Documents ......................................................................................... 5


2 GRACE MISSION OVERVIEW...........................................................................................................7
2.1 GRACE Mission................................................................................................... 7
2.2 GRACE Requirements ........................................................................................ 7
2.3 Satellite Description ............................................................................................. 8

2.3.1 Sensors ................................................................................................................................................8


2.3.2 Orbit....................................................................................................................................................9
2.3.3 Ground-Track Coverage.................................................................................................................10

2.4 GRACE Mission Phases .................................................................................... 10


Launch and Early Operations Phase (LEOP) ..............................................................................10
Commissioning Phase......................................................................................................................10
Validation Phase ..............................................................................................................................10
Observational Phase ........................................................................................................................11

2.4.1
2.4.2
2.4.3
2.4.4

2.5 Data Processing and Distribution..................................................................... 11


2.6 GRACE SDS Products ...................................................................................... 11
Level 0 Data......................................................................................................................................11
Level 1A Data...................................................................................................................................11
Level 1B Data ...................................................................................................................................11
Level 2 Data......................................................................................................................................12
3 GRACE LEVEL 1B DATA ..................................................................................................................14
2.6.1
2.6.2
2.6.3
2.6.4

3.1 Dual-One-Way Ranging Data........................................................................... 14


Biased Range ....................................................................................................................................14
Range Rate .......................................................................................................................................15
Range Acceleration..........................................................................................................................15
Light time Correction......................................................................................................................15
Geometric Correction......................................................................................................................15

3.1.1
3.1.2
3.1.3
3.1.4
3.1.5

3.2 Star Camera Data .............................................................................................. 15


3.3 Accelerometer Data ........................................................................................... 16
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3.4 GPS Tracking Flight Data ................................................................................ 16

3.4.1 Range Measurements ......................................................................................................................16


3.4.2 Phase Measurements .......................................................................................................................17

3.5 Housekeeping Data ............................................................................................ 17


3.6 Timing ................................................................................................................. 17
3.7 Orbit .................................................................................................................... 18
4 USING THE GRACE LEVEL 1B DATA ...........................................................................................19
4.1 K-Band Ranging Data Product (KBR1B) ....................................................... 19

4.1.1 Biased Range, Range Rate and Range Acceleration ....................................................................19


4.1.2 KBR1B Data Flagging/Editing .......................................................................................................20
4.1.3 Total Electron Content Change from Biased Ionosphere Correction ........................................21

4.2 Star Camera Data Product (SCA1B) ............................................................... 21

4.2.1 SCA1B Data Flagging/Editing........................................................................................................21

4.3 Accelerometer Data Product (ACC1B)............................................................ 22

4.3.1 Linear and angular acceleration components...............................................................................22


4.3.2 ACC1B Data Flagging/Editing .......................................................................................................22

4.4 GPS Data Product (GPS1B).............................................................................. 22


4.5 Vector Products (VGN1B, VGO1B, VGB1B, VCM1B, VKB1B, VSL1B) ... 23
4.6 Quaternion Products (QSA1B, QSB1B) .......................................................... 23
4.7 Housekeeping Products (AHK1B, IHK1B, THR1B, TNK1B, MAG1B,
MAS1B, TIM1B) ......................................................................................................... 23
4.7.1 Accelerometer bias and scale determination.................................................................................23
4.7.2 Center of Mass Offset management...............................................................................................24
4.8 Sequence of Event File....................................................................................... 24
4.9 Report files.......................................................................................................... 29
5 LEVEL 1B DATA CONTENT AND FORMAT ................................................................................30
5.1 Overview ............................................................................................................. 30
5.2 File Structure...................................................................................................... 30

5.2.1 Header Description..........................................................................................................................30


5.2.2 Data Description ..............................................................................................................................31

5.3 File Naming Convention.................................................................................... 31


5.4 ASCII versions of Level-1B format .................................................................. 32
6 GRACE LEVEL 1B DATA PRODUCT FORMATS ........................................................................33
6.1 Overview ............................................................................................................. 33
6.2 Accelerometer Data Format Record (ACC1B) ............................................... 33
6.3 Clock Data Format Record (CLK1B) .............................................................. 34
6.4 GPS Flight Data Format Record (GPS1B)...................................................... 34
6.5 GPS Navigation Data Format Record (GNV1B) ........................................... 36
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6.6 IPU Housekeeping Data Format Record (IHK1B) ......................................... 37
6.7 KBR Data Format Record (KBR1B) ............................................................... 37
6.8 Magnetometer and Magnettorquer Data Format Record (MAG1B) ........... 38
6.9 Spacecraft Mass Data Format Record (MAS1B)............................................ 39
6.10 Star Camera Assembly Data Format Record (SCA1B) ............................... 40
6.11 Thrusters Data Format Record (THR1B) ..................................................... 41
6.12 Mapping of OBDH Time to Receiver time (TIM1B).................................... 42
6.13 Cold Gas Tank Data Format Record (TNK1B) ............................................ 43
6.14 Ultra Stable Oscillator Frequency Data Format Record (USO1B) ............ 44
6.15 Vector Orientation Data Format Record (VGN1B, VGO1B, VGB1B,
VCM1B, VKB1B, VSL1B ) ........................................................................................ 44
Appendix A ACRONYMS .......................................................................................................................46
Appendix B Report Files ..........................................................................................................................47
Appendix C CONTACTS ........................................................................................................................58

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1 INTRODUCTION
1.1 Handbook Purpose
The purpose of this document is to assist investigators of the Gravity Recovery and Climate
Experiment (GRACE) Mission by providing a comprehensive description of the content and
format of the GRACE Level 1B data. The document also provides an overview of the
GRACE mission and a description of the measurements and corrections. More information
on data algorithms and instruments can be found in GRACE project documents (see section
1.6).
In addition to the GRACE Level 1B instrument data described in this document, two
ancillary Level 1B products are generated by GFZ Potsdam:

Atomsphere and Ocean De-aliasing level 1B product (AOD1B): Spherical harmonic


coefficients of combined barotropic or baroclinic sea level and vertical integrated
pressure variations at 6-hour sample rate.

Ocean level 1B product (OCN1B): Hourly grids of barotropic sea level determined
from JPL barotropic ocean model (only for release 00 and 01).

Both products and all data releases are described in the AOD1B Product Description
Document, Rev 3.1, GRACE 327750, April 2007 by Frank Flechtner.
GRACE data are archived and distributed through two agencies:

JPL Physical Oceanography Distributed Active Archive Center (PO.DAAC)


The PO.DAAC is one element of the Earth Observing System Data and Information
System (EOSDIS), developed by NASA. The goal of the PO.DAAC is to serve the
needs of the oceanographic, geophysical and interdisciplinary science communities
that require physical information about the oceans.

GeoForschungsZentrum Potsdam (GFZ)


The GFZ is a non-university geoscientific research institute that combines all solid
earth science fields including geodesy, geology, geophysics, mineralogy and
geochemistry, in a multidisciplinary research center.

1.2 Handbook Overview


This is a combination of a guide to data usage and a reference handbook.
Section 1 provides background information about the GRACE Level 1B data and this
document.
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Section 2 is an overview of the GRACE mission.
Section 3 is an introduction to the GRACE level 1B algorithms.
Section 4 is an introduction to using the GRACE level 1B data.
Section 5 provides a description of the content and format of the GRACE Level 1B data
products.
Section 6 provides a detailed description of all level 1B data products and fields.
Appendix A contains acronyms.
Appendix B contains report files containing data quality analysis.
Appendix C describes how to order information or data from PO.DAAC and lists related web
sites.

1.3 Purpose of the GRACE Level 1B data


The GRACE Level 1B data provide all necessary inputs to derive monthly time-variations in
the Earths gravity field. Level 1B data are also used for GRACE orbit determination and
mean gravity field determination.

1.4 Document reference and contributors


When referencing this document, please use the following citation:
K. Case, G. Kruizinga, and S. Wu, 2002, GRACE Level 1B Data Product User Handbook,
JPL Publication D-22027.
Other contributors include:
M. Watkins, W. Bertiger, and L. Romans from JPL
S. Bettadpur from UTCSR
F. Flechtner from GFZ

1.5 Conventions
1.5.1 Units
All quantities reported are given in SI units:

Acceleration is reported in meters per seconds squared (m/s2).

Angular acceleration is reported in radians per seconds squared (rad/s2).

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Range is reported in meters (m).

Magnetic field strength is reported in nanoteslas (nT).

Current is reported in ampere (A).

Temperature is reported in degrees Celsius (C).

1.5.2 GPS Time


For the GRACE mission GPS time is defined as seconds past January 1, 2000, 12:00:00. This
definition is different from other missions where GPS time is defined as seconds past January
6, 1980, 00:00:00. The GRACE GPS time has the same rate as UTC but no leap seconds are
applied, as follows:
GPS time = UTC time + leap seconds since epoch
where UTC is expressed in seconds past January 1, 2000, 12:00:00.
For example:
GPS time
UTC time
leap seconds at 90000000 UTC

= 90000000 sec (8-NOV-2002 04:00:00.0000 GPS)


= 89999987 sec (8-NOV-2002 03:59:47.0000 UTC)
= 13 sec

For a table of leap seconds past epoch see the International Earth Rotation Service (IERS)
Earth Orientation Center at the U.S. Naval Observatory:
http://maia.usno.navy.mil/

1.5.3 Coordinate Systems


Several coordinate systems are used to define the various GRACE data products. The
definitions are summarized in this section. The satellite body-fixed frames are shown in
Figure 1-1.
1.5.3.1 Satellite Frame (SF)
The origin is within 0.1 mm of the accelerometer frame origin. The Satellite Frame has its
coordinate axes directed as follows:
XSF = from the origin to a target location of the phase center of the K/Ka Band horn
(Roll Axis)
YSF = forms a right-handed triad with XSF and ZSF (Pitch Axis)
ZSF = normal to XSF and to the plane of the main equipment platform, and positive
towards the satellite radiator (Yaw Axis)
During flight, the satellites have nadir-pointing Yaw axis orientation, with the Roll axes in
the anti-flight and in-flight directions for the leading and trailing satellites, respectively.
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1.5.3.2 Accelerometer Frame (AF)
The origin is within 0.1 mm of the ACC origin. The Accelerometer Frame is aligned by the
reference optical marks on the exterior surface. The coordinate axes are directed as follows:
XA = +YSF (ACC Least Sensitive Axis)
YA = + ZSF
ZA = + XSF
1.5.3.3 Science Reference Frame (SRF)
The origin of the SRF is the origin of the accelerometer frame. The Science Reference
Frame has its coordinate axes directed as follows:
XSRF = +ZA
YSRF = + XA (ACC Least Sensitive Axis)
ZSRF = + YA
Note: The GRACE ground calibrations and in-flight measurements utilize several of the
coordinate systems. However, for consistency all level 1B products are provided in the
Science Reference Frame (SRF).

Figure 1-1 Satellite body-fixed frames

1.5.4 Data Quality Flags


Every product has its own data quality flag. See Sections 4 and 6 for more detail.
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1.5.5 Default Values


The GPS Navigation Level 1B Format Record (GNV1B) is the only product with default
values. Data values default to zero for formal errors on position and velocity when not
available.

1.5.6 Byte Order


All data files are generated according to the big endian byte-ordering convention, which
stores the most significant byte in the lowest memory address (the word is stored `big-endfirst').
Motorola 680x0 microprocessors (and therefore Macintoshes), Hewlett-Packard PA-RISC,
and Sun SuperSPARC processors are big endian. The Silicon Graphics MIPS and
IBM/Motorola PowerPC processors are both little and big endian (bi-endian). The Intel
80X86 and Pentium and DEC Alpha RISC processors are little endian. Windows NT and
OSF/1 are little endian.
Note: The read software provided byte swaps internally.

1.5.7 Bit Fields Order


Regarding the bitfield notation, the convention is to number the bits from right to left:
The least significant bit (LSB) at location 0 and the most significant bit (MSB) at
location 7, for a one byte bitfield

The least significant bit (LSB) at location 0 and the most significant bit (MSB) at
location 15, for a two byte bitfield

This convention is represented below for one and two byte bitfield.
One Byte
7
MSB

0
LSB

13

12

11

10

Two bytes
15
MSB

14

0
LSB

1.6 Applicable Documents


Flechtner, F., AOD1B Product Description Document, GRACE 327-750, Revision 3.1, April
13, 2007.
Fowler, W. and P.A.M. Abusali, GRACE Mission Plan, UTCSR, April 2, 2001.
GRACE Science Data System Development Plan, JPL 327-710, Revision C, June 30, 2000.

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GRACE Satellite System Specification, GRACE 327-400, December 6, 1999.
GRACE Product Specification Document, GRACE 327-720, November 28, 1999.
Kim, J.R., Simulation Study of a Low-Low Satellite-to-Satellite Tracking Mission, Ph.D.
dissertation, University of Texas at Austin, May 2000.
Stanton, R.H., Science and Mission Requirements Document, Revision C, GRACE 327-200,
JPL D-15928, August 16, 2000.
Stanton, R.H., Functional Specifications of the Twin GRACE satellites, GRACE-327-220,
JPL D-18862, February 25, 2000.
Thomas, J.B., An Analysis of Gravity-Field Estimation Based on Inter-satellite Dual OneWay Biased Ranging, JPL Publication 98-15, 1999
Wu, S.-C. and G.L.H. Kruizinga, Algorithm Theoretical Basis Document for GRACE Level1B Data Processing, JPL Publication D-27672, Version 1.0, January 2004.

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2 GRACE MISSION OVERVIEW


The Gravity Recovery And Climate Experiment (GRACE) is a joint US/German satellite
mission that will accurately map variations in the Earth's gravity field over its 5-year lifetime.
The twin GRACE satellites were launched March 17, 2002.
GRACE is a joint partnership between the National Aeronautics and Space Administration
(NASA) in the United States and Deutsches Zentrum Fr Luft und Raumfahrt (DLR) in
Germany. Dr. Byron Tapley of The University of Texas Center for Space Research
(UTCSR) is the Principal Investigator (PI). Until 2004, Prof. Christoph Reigber of the
GeoForschungsZentrum (GFZ) German Research Centre for Geosciences in Potsdam,
Germany, was the Co-Principal Investigator (Co-PI), followed by Prof. Dr. Markus
Rothacher (GFZ). Since 2009, the Co-PI has been Dr. Frank Flechtner (GFZ). The Jet
Propulsion Laboratory carries out project management and systems engineering activities.

2.1 GRACE Mission


The primary objective of the GRACE mission is to obtain accurate global models for the
mean and the time variable components of the Earths gravity field for a period up to five
years. This objective will be achieved by making measurements of inter-satellite range and
its derivative of co-planar, low altitude, near-polar orbiting satellites, using a microwave
tracking system. In addition, each satellite will carry Global Position System (GPS)
receivers and high accuracy accelerometers to enable accurate orbit determination, spatial
registration of gravity data and the estimation of gravity field models.
In the oceanographic community the knowledge of the static geoid, in conjunction with
satellite altimeter data, will allow significant advances in the studies of ocean heat flux, long
term sea level change, upper oceanic heat content, and the absolute surface geostrophic
currents. Further, the estimates of time variations in the gravity field obtained from
GRACE, in conjunction with other in-situ data and geophysical models, will help the science
community unravel complex processes in oceanography (e.g. deep ocean current changes and
sea level rise), hyrdology (e.g. large scale evapo-transpiration and soil moisture changes),
glaciology (e.g. polar and Greenland ice sheet changes), and the solid Earth sciences.
An additional science goal of the GRACE mission is to enable advances in the atmospheric
sciences by the recovery of refractivity (and the derived quantities of temperature and water
vapor profiles) and fine ionospheric structure from the use of GPS radio occultation data.

2.2 GRACE Requirements


To ensure that science and mission goals are accomplished, the following requirements were
established. The Earths geopotential field shall be characterized by the coefficients of a
spherical harmonic expansion. These coefficients shall be estimated to degree and order 160
or more for the long-term mean part, and to degree and order 100 or less for the time variable
part. The temporal variability shall be characterized by mean values of the coefficients over
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30 days or so. In addition, approximately 200 GPS atmospheric profile soundings per day
shall be acquired, subject to data system limitations. These data will provide globally
distributed profiles each day of the excess delay, or bending angle of the GPS measurements
due to the ionosphere and the atmosphere.

2.3 Satellite Description


The two GRACE satellites are identical, except for the S-band radio frequencies used for
communication with the ground, and the K-band frequencies used for the inter-satellite link.
Both satellites are capable of flying either in the lead or trailing positions, forward or
backward into the residual atmospheric wind. The combined mass of the two satellites is less
than 950 kg. The spacecraft is designed as a prismatic body with side panels at a 50 o angle.
The panels are designed to support the stringent requirements for alignment and stability.
The GRACE satellites were launched together on a single ROCKOT launch vehicle from
Plesetsk, Russia (62.7o N, 40.3o E) on March 17, 2002.

Figure 2-1 Twin GRACE satellites

2.3.1 Sensors
The mission goals are carried out using the following science instruments.

SuperSTAR Accelerometer (ACC)


The accelerometer, located at the center of mass of each satellite, measures all nongravitational forces acting on each satellite. These forces include air drag, solar

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radiation pressure, and attitude control activator operation.

Global Positioning System Receiver Assembly (GPS)


The GPS Receiver Assembly provides navigation data and atmospheric occultation
science measurements.

Star Camera Assembly (SCA)


The two star cameras mounted close to the accelerometer on each satellite provide the
precise attitude references for the satellites when making science measurements.

K-Band Ranging System (KBR)


This instrument precisely measures the changes in the separation between the two
GRACE satellites using phase tracking of K- and Ka-band signals sent between the
two satellites

Laser Retro Reflector (LRR)


The LRR on board each satellite provides the external calibration of the onboard
microwave orbit determination system (GPS). Laser ranging data can be used to
support the precise orbit determination in connection with GPS data for gravity field
recovery.

2.3.2 Orbit
The twin GRACE satellites fly a polar orbit with an altitude of 500 km decaying to 300 km
near the end of mission. The End-of-Mission (EOM) column denotes the desired conditions
after five years.
Orbit Characteristics
Orbit Parameter

Initial Value

Tolerance

EOM

6878 km
(500 km height)

+ 10 km

6678 km
(300 km height)

Eccentricity

< 0.005

N/A

< 0.005

Inclination

89 deg

+ 0.05 deg

89 deg

Semi-major axis

Over the mission lifetime, the two satellites will remain in co-planar orbits. Due to drag
force differences, the along-track separation will be variable. Station-keeping maneuvers
will be carried out every 30 to 60 days, as necessary, to keep the two satellites at their
nominal separation of 220 km +50 km. To ensure the uniform exposure and aging of the KBand antennae in the two satellites, once during the mission the leading and trailing satellites
will exchange positions. The altitudes of the two satellites will decay in tandem, from near
500 km at the beginning of the mission, to 300 km and lower at the end of mission. In order

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to ensure an overall mission lifetime of five years, the altitudes of the two satellites may be
re-boosted once, if deemed necessary.

2.3.3 Ground-Track Coverage


The GRACE orbit period will change as the orbit decays from an initial altitude of about 500
km to the end of mission altitude of 300 km. This will cause the spacing between the ground
tracks on successive orbits to decrease slowly. When the time required for m orbital periods
(m is an integer) is approximately equal to n sidereal days (n is another integer) and m and n
are sufficiently small, the ground tracks will repeat.
Over any typical 30-day span (the nominal interval of solution for gravity field) of nonrepeating orbit configurations, there will be no discernible systematic patterns in the groundtracks, and a geographically dense data coverage is obtained. In the repeating configurations,
on the other hand, there will be large and systematic gaps in the geographical layout of the
ground-tracks. These tracks will fill the gaps only after a long duration (more than 30 days),
or after the natural altitude decay carries the satellites through such configurations.

2.4 GRACE Mission Phases


2.4.1 Launch and Early Operations Phase (LEOP)
In addition to the German Space Operations Center (GSOC) ground stations at Weilheim and
Neustrelitz, NASA tracking stations at McMurdo, Spitzbergen, and Poker Flat shall be
available for telemetry and command uplink during the LEOP phase.
The LEOP phase nominally ends when the following conditions have been met:
1) Both satellites are in safe, stable orbits with no danger of collision with each other,
with launch vehicle, or co-passenger satellites.
2) Both satellites have attained nominal attitude control including successful star-camera
acquisition.
3) Nominal uplink and downlink communications are achieved with GSOC stations.
4) No anomalies exist that pose a near-term threat to the mission.
5) The nominal separation distance between the satellites (220 km + 50 km) has been
achieved and stabilized.

2.4.2 Commissioning Phase


Following LEOP, there will be a one month Commissioning Phase. The aim of the
Commissioning Phase is to check out the individual satellite bus and payload instrument
functions.

2.4.3 Validation Phase


Following the Commissioning Phase, there will be a six-month Validation Phase in which the
instrument checkout is performed in detail, and GPS, KBR, ACC, and SCA data are
evaluated. The Validation Phase will last approximately until May 2004. Initial calibrations
will be completed for the distance between the satellite center-of-mass and the accelerometer
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proof mass, the orientation of each SCA with respect to the K-Band boresight vector, and
accelerometer bias and scale factors. Using these calibrations, preliminary gravity field
solutions will be computed, and verified through a combination of internal consistency
checks and comparison with in-situ and ocean bottom pressure data.

2.4.4 Observational Phase


Following the Validation phase, the mission will enter the Observational Phase, in which
science data are routinely gathered from the science payload. This phase will continue until
the end of mission, with the exception of brief periods for orbit maintenance and
recalibrations.

2.5 Data Processing and Distribution


The Science Data System (SDS) is a distributed data system. System development, data
processing and archiving are shared between the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), The
University of Texas, Center for Space Research (UTCSR), and GeoForschungsZentrum
(GFZ). The SDS functions include science data processing, archiving, distribution, and
product verification. The SDS also receives, processes, and archives ancillary data (e.g.,
meteorological fields) necessary for data processing and verification.

2.6 GRACE SDS Products


2.6.1 Level 0 Data
The Level 0 data products are the result of telemetry data reception, collection and
decommutation by the GRACE Raw Data Center (RDC) at DLR in Neustrelitz. This
telemetry data from each downlink pass is separated into the Science Instrument and
Spacecraft Housekeeping data streams, and placed in a rolling archive at the RDC. From
each satellite, as a result, two files from each pass are made available in the rolling archive.
These two files are defined to be the Level 0 data.

2.6.2 Level 1A Data


The Level 1A data are the result of a non-destructive processing applied to the Level 0 data.
The sensor calibration factors are applied in order to convert the binary encoded
measurements to engineering units. Where necessary, time tag integer second ambiguity is
resolved and data are time tagged to the respective satellite receiver clock time. Editing and
quality control flags are added, and the data is reformatted for further processing. The Level
1A data are reversible to Level 0, except for the bad data packets. This level also includes
the ancillary data products needed for processing to the next data level.

2.6.3 Level 1B Data


The Level 1B data are derived from the (possibly irreversible) processing applied to both the
Level 1A and Level 0 data. The data are correctly time-tagged, and the data sample rate is
reduced from the high rate data of previous levels. Collectively, the processing from Level 0
to Level 1B is called the Level 1 Processing. This level also includes the ancillary data
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products generated during this processing, and the additional data needed for further
processing. The Level 1B data will be made available simultaneous with the delivery of the
monthly gravity field to the science community.

2.6.4 Level 2 Data


The Level-2 data include the orbits for the GRACE spacecraft, estimates of spherical
harmonic coefficients for the Earth gravitational potential. The Level 2 gravity field model
data will be available within 60 days of acquisition.

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Figure 2-2 GRACE Science Data Flow (Shaded areas denode the SDS)

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3 GRACE LEVEL 1B DATA


This section presents a short discussion of the algorithms producing the main quantities on
the Level 1B data and is based on Algorithm Theoretical Basis Document for GRACE
Level-1B Data Processing, JPL Publication D-27672, January 2004 by Sien-Chong Wu and
Gerhard L.H. Kruizinga.

3.1 Dual-One-Way Ranging Data


The line-of-sight distance change, partially induced by the variations in Earths gravity field,
is derived from the phase change measurements made between the respective antenna phase
centers on the two satellites using the microwave (K-band) ranging instruments onboard.

3.1.1 Biased Range


The KBR1B data provide the biased ranges between the GRACE A and B spacecrafts. The
biased range is the true range plus an unknown bias. The bias is arbitrary for each piecewise
continuous segment of phase change measurements and may change over day boundaries.
The biased ranges also include range changes introduced by the time of flight of the K band
signal, referred to as light time corrections, as well as geometric range changes due to
spacecraft attitude variations.
K band ranging level 1A (KBR1A) data are pre-processed and flagged for phase breaks. The
data quality flag [see parameter qualflg (bit=0) in KBR1B] is set if the (K 0.75 Ka) phase
discontinuity exceeds 0.2 cycle. Data gaps of 2 seconds or shorter are filled by forming a
least squares estimate, then using quadratic interpolation when at least 2 points per side are
available. If there are less than two points per side, then linear interpolation is used to fill the
data gap. Data gaps exceeding 2 seconds are filled after forming dual one-way range. The
KBR1A timetags are corrected to GPS time for the receiver-clock offsets using GPS clock
solutions supplied by CLK1B data. KBR1A measurements with corrected timetags are then
re-sampled to 0.1-second intervals using linear interpolation.
Dual one-way biased range combinations are calculated for both K- and Ka- band
frequencies:
= [(A,K + B,K) / (fA,K + fB,K)] * c
a = [(A.Ka + B,Ka) / (fA,Ka + fB,Ka)] * c

where A = phase of GRACE A


B = phase of GRACE B
fA = frequency of GRACE A
fB = frequency of GRACE B
c = speed of light
Ion-free dual one-way biased range combination is calculated as:

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biased range = (ion_Ka * a) - (ion_K * )

where ion_Ka = 16/7


ion_K = 9/7
Finally, each 0.2 Hz frame of the K- and Ka- band biased range measurements
[biased_range] are compressed using a CRN digital filter [Thomas, 1999] of the respective
10 Hz measurements every 5 seconds. Weighting functions for range, range rate and range
acceleration, each spanning 70.7 seconds, are adopted. Data are flagged according to the
severity of the filled missing data from the center.

3.1.2 Range Rate


The KBR1B data provide the range rate, which is the first time derivative between the
GRACE A and B spacecrafts.

3.1.3 Range Acceleration


The KBR1B data provide the range acceleration, which is the second time derivative between
the GRACE A and B spacecrafts.

3.1.4 Light time Correction


The distance traveled by both satellites during the time-of-flight of the K band signal from
the transmit-to-receiver time must be accounted for to convert the observed dual one-way
biased range into instantaneous range [Kim, 2000]. This is referred to as the light time
correction [see parameter lighttime_corr in KBR1B]. It is derived from the GRACE orbit
positions and velocities from the two GPS1B files. Respective light time corrections are also
reported for range rate and range acceleration.

3.1.5 Geometric Correction


In-flight GRACE A and B satellites do not usually have perfect line-of-sight pointing. The
biased range must be corrected to account for the effects due to misalignment of spacecraft
attitude variations [see parameter ant_centr_corr in KBR1B]. This range correction is
calculated by first rotating the antenna phase center offset vector into inertial space using the
spacecraft attitude information from the two input SCA1B files and then taking dot products
with the line-of-sight vector between the two spacecrafts. Respective geometric corrections
are also reported for range rate and range acceleration.

3.2 Star Camera Data


Star camera level 1A (SCA1A) data can have up to two star camera measurements: 1- second
high-rate samples from the primary star camera and/or 5-second samples from the secondary
star camera.
The two data streams are edited. A reference quaternion is computed using line-of-sight
orbit. Residuals are then formed for one day. Outliers are removed using a global three-

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sigma editing and then a refined localized three-sigma editing. Resulting quaternions are
verified for sign ambiguity.
For the primary star camera data gaps of 10 seconds or shorter are filled using quadratic
interpolation when at least 2 points per side are available. If there are less than two points
per side, then linear interpolation is used to fill the data gap. Data gaps exceeding 10 seconds
are not filled. Secondary star camera data gaps are not filled.
Timetag corrected data are then re-sampled to 1-second intervals for the primary star camera
and 5-second intervals for the secondary star camera using linear interpolation.
Primary star camera measurements are then compressed to 5-second intervals with a
quadratic fit over five 1-second data points.
Resulting primary and secondary quaternions are combined using a weighted summation.
The measurements are reported at 5-second intervals.

3.3 Accelerometer Data


The accelerometer data provide the linear (high rate) and angular (low rate) acceleration
components of the proof mass of each spacecraft.
Accelerometer level 1A (ACC1A) data are pre-processed and quality flags are checked. Data
gaps of 10 seconds or shorter are filled using quadratic interpolation when at least 2 points
per side are available. If there are less than two points per side, then linear interpolation is
used to fill the data gap. Data gaps exceeding 10 seconds are not filled. Timetags are
mapped from the On Board Data Handling (OBDH) time to receiver time using TIM1B data,
then corrected to GPS time using GPS clock solutions supplied by CLK1B data. Timetag
corrected data are then re-sampled to 0.1-second intervals using linear interpolation.
ACC1A linear measurements are compressed using a CRN digital filter [Thomas, 1999] over
a 70.7 second span. Angular measurements are sampled at integer multiples of 5 seconds.
Data are flagged according to the severity of the filled missing data from the center.

3.4 GPS Tracking Flight Data


GPS Level 1B data consist of three range measurements (CA, L1, and L2) and three phase
measurements (CA, L1, and L2) all at 10-second intervals.

3.4.1 Range Measurements


GPS Level 1A data are checked for L1-L2 and CA-L2 phase continuity. The data quality flag
[see parameter qualflg in GPS1B] is set if phase discontinuity exceeds one L1cycle. Cycle
slips, i.e., phase discontinuities within an arc, are also identified.
As with all GRACE Level 1B data, the timetags are corrected to GPS time using GPS clock
solutions supplied by CLK1B data. However, in order to interpolate the 10-second range
data with greatest accuracy, the large dynamic range must first be removed from the absolute
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range bias. This separation is achieved by forming differences of range data and the
following negative-ion phase combinations, in order to have the same ionospheric effects as
the corresponding range data:
negative-ion CA phase = (2.54+1.54) CA 2(1.54) 2
negative-ion L1 phase = (2.54 + 1.54) 2(1.54)
negative-ion L2 phase = 2(1.54) (2.54 + 1.54)
1

where CA = CA carrier phase


1 = L1 carrier phase
2 = L2 carrier phase
Timetag corrections are applied to the negative-ion phase, and then are re-sampled to 10second intervals with linear interpolation. Re-sampled negative-ion phases are added back
to the corresponding raw (range minus negative ion phase) data to form the re-sampled CA,
L1, and L2 ranges that are reported on the GPS Level 1B data.

3.4.2 Phase Measurements


GPS Level 1A data are flagged for phase discontinuity. Raw phase measurements are
timetag corrected to GPS time using GPS clock solutions supplied by CLK1B data. Timetag
corrected data are then re-sampled to 10-second intervals with cubic interpolation over a 10second data span.

3.5 Housekeeping Data


The Housekeeping Products contain instrument health and calibration data, which are
collected onboard and can be used to make corrections to the main measurements.
Housekeeping Data includes the following ancillary data products:
Accelerometer Housekeeping Data (AHK1B)
IPU Housekeeping Data Level 1B (IHK1B)
Thrusters Level 1B Data (THR1B)
Cold Gas Tank Level 1B Data (TNK1B)
Magnetometer and Magnettorquer Level 1B Data (MAG1B)
Spacecraft Mass Level 1B Data (MAS1B)
Mapping of OBDH time to Receiver time (TIM1B)

3.6 Timing
All Level 1B data products are time tagged with GPS time. Time tags are mapped from the
On Board Data Handling (OBDH) time to receiver time using TIM1B data, then corrected to
GPS time using GPS clock solutions supplied by CLK1B data. No further time tag
corrections are needed for all Level 1B data. TIM1B and CLK1B are provided merely as
ancillary products.
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Note: the relative timing between GRACE A and GRACE B has an accuracy requirement of
0.16 nanoseconds.

3.7 Orbit
The GPS Navigation Level 1B Format Record (GNV1B) provides the location of the
orbit in an Earth fixed frame.

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4 USING THE GRACE LEVEL 1B DATA


This section will give the reader a guide to usage of the GRACE Level 1B data. The current
document provides the best description and correction possible. Further changes, e.g. new
quality flag definitions, based on discussions at SDS workshops or based on
remarks/questions of other users will be distributed to all users in an updated version of the
handbook. Please direct questions and comments to the contacts given on the last page of this
handbook.
Data usage notes and editing criteria are provided below for the Level 1B data products. The
user should review these criteria before using them and may wish to modify them! It is
recommended to check the web sites listed in Appendix C for updates.
In this section references are made to specific parameters by name. All parameters are
described in Section 6, GRACE Level 1B Product Format.

4.1 K-Band Ranging Data Product (KBR1B)


4.1.1 Biased Range, Range Rate and Range Acceleration
The KBR1B data provide the biased ranges and their two time derivatives between the
GRACE A and B spacecrafts. The reported biased ranges are corrected for ionospheric
effects. The biased ionospheric correction is reported separately for the Ka band frequency.
The biased ranges must be corrected for light time and geometric effects (i.e., antenna
offsets). All range corrections are defined so that they should be ADDED to the range. The
corrected biased range is given by
Corrected Biased Range = biased range + light time correction
+ antenna offset correction

Biased range = biased range between GRACE A and B (biased_range from KBR1B)
Light time correction = light time range correction between GRACE A and B
(lighttime_corr from KBR1B)
Antenna offset correction = antenna phase center range correction (ant_centr_corr from
KBR1B)
The reported range rates and range accelerations must also be corrected with their respective
light time and geometric effects:
Corrected Range Rate = range rate + light time rate correction
+ antenna offset rate correction

Range rate = range rate between GRACE A and B (range_rate from KBR1B)

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Light time rate correction = light time range rate correction between GRACE A and B
(lighttime_rate from KBR1B)
Antenna offset rate correction = antenna phase center range rate correction (ant_centr_rate
from KBR1B)
Corrected Range Acceleration = range acceleration
+ light time acceleration correction
+ antenna offset acceleration correction

Range acceleration = range acceleration between GRACE A and B (range_accl from


KBR1B)
Light time acceleration correction = light time range acceleration correction between
GRACE A and B (lighttime_accl from KBR1B)
Antenna offset acceleration correction = antenna phase center range acceleration
correction (ant_centr_accl from KBR1B)

4.1.2 KBR1B Data Flagging/Editing


The following editing criteria are a recommended guideline for finding good records from
the KBR1B data.
First, check the following condition to identify phase breaks:
qualflg bit 0=1

phase break

The following quality flags are provided as additional informative flags, and do not usually
indicate further data editing recommendations:
qualflg bit 1 = extrapolated states for lighttime_corr
qualflg bit 2 = model eci attitudes for ant_cntr_corr
qualflg bit 3 = extrapolated clock correction > 5s from fit center
qualflg bit 4 = extrapolated clock correction < 5s from fit center
qualflg bit 5 = data corrected for timetag bias of either K or Ka phase
qualflg bit 6 = filled data > 5s from fit center
qualflg bit 7 = filled data < 5s from fit center
In addition to checking the above conditions, it is also recommended to filter the data as
follows to retain only the most valid data:
SNRK* > 450.0 0.1 db-Hz
However, prior to 3 February 2003 for GRACE B and 8 May 2003 for GRACE A, constant
low SNR values of approximately 340 were observed, for which data are valid. These
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constant low SNR are erroneous and should not be filtered. Occurrences of constant values
can last up to ~1 days. Furthermore, on 04 February 2005 the GRACE B Ka SNR
measurements became invalid and do not reflect the actual Ka SNR derived from noise
characteristics of the Ka phase measurement. Therefore, no measurements should be filtered
based on the GRACE B SNR after 04 February 2005 00:00:00.
To convert SNR to a 1-second error in cycles of phase use the following formula:
y = 1 sec SNR voltage = 10 [x/(10*20)]
sigma_phase = 1/(2y) cycles
where
x = any of SNRK* numbers: SNRA,K, SNRA,Ka, SNRB,K, SNRB,Ka

4.1.3 Total Electron Content Change from Biased Ionosphere


Correction
The biased ionospheric correction that is reported for the Ka band frequency contains an
arbitrary bias. Therefore, the correction indicates the change in the ionosphere as a function
of time. To calculate the change in ionospheric total electron content (TEC), use the
following formula:
Total Electron Content = (dR*f2Ka)/40.3
where
Total Electron Content is the TECU (1 TECU = 1016 electrons/m2)
dR = change in ionospheric range correction in m from KBR1B
(For example, ion_corrn ion_corrn-1)
f =
frequency in Hz (Ka = 32GHz)

4.2 Star Camera Data Product (SCA1B)


4.2.1 SCA1B Data Flagging/Editing
The following editing criteria are a recommended guideline for finding good records from
the SCA1B data.
Quality flags that indicate data gaps filled, according to severity:
qualflg bit 0=1
qualflg bit 1=1
qualflg bit 2=1

filled data at T
filled data at T + 1 second
filled data at T + 2 seconds

Additional quality flags include:


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qualflg bit 3=1
qualflg bit 4=1
qualflg bit 6=1
qualflg bit 7=1

only one star camera enabled


extrapolated clock correction used
low rate data from 2nd star camera
low rate data from 1st star camera

4.3 Accelerometer Data Product (ACC1B)


4.3.1 Linear and angular acceleration components
The ACC1B data provide the linear and angular acceleration components of the proof mass
of each spacecraft.

4.3.2 ACC1B Data Flagging/Editing


The following editing criteria are a recommended guideline for finding good records from
the ACC1B data.
Quality flags that indicate data gaps filled, according to severity:
qualflg bit 7=1
qualflg bit 6=1
qualflg bit 5=1

filled data < 5s from fit center


5s < filled data < 15s from fit center
filled data > 15s from fit center

Quality flags that indicate extrapolated clock corrections, according to severity:


qualflg bit 4=1
qualflg bit 3=1
qualflg bit 2=1

extrapolated clock correction < 5s from fit center


5s < extrapolated clock correction < 15s from fit center
linear ACC component has fit residual > 10 microns/s2

4.4 GPS Data Product (GPS1B)


The following editing criteria are a recommended guideline for finding good records from
the GPS1B data.
Quality flags that identify phase breaks and cycle slips:
qualflg bit 0=1
qualflg bit 1=1

phase break occurred in L1/CA


phase break occurred in L2

qualflg bit 2=1


qualflg bit 3=1

cycle slip detected in L1/CA


cycle slip detected in L2

Note: Software is provided to convert the binary GPS data to RINEX (Receiver Independent
Exchange Format.)

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4.5 Vector Products (VGN1B, VGO1B, VGB1B, VCM1B,


VKB1B, VSL1B)
The Vector Products contain the vector offsets for the GPS main antenna, the GPS backup
navigation antenna, the GPS occultation antenna, the SLR corner cube reflector, the center of
mass solution from calibration maneuvers, and KBR phase centers. These products are only
released when values are reset. Each file provides an update and contains the history for the
entire mission.
The Vector Products contain the magnitude and direction cosine of the vector with respect to
the satellite x-, y-, and z-axes in the Science Reference Frame, where the X, Y, and Z
coordinates are defined as follows:
X = mag * cosx
Y = mag * cosy
Z = mag * cosz

4.6 Quaternion Products (QSA1B, QSB1B)


The Quaternion Products contain the spacecraft alignment quaternions for each GRACE
satellite. These products are ancillary because the alignment quaternions (QSA1B) have
been used in producing the SCA1B product. QSB1B is not used at this time and QKS1B is a
quaternion used on board to point the KBR phase center at the opposite spacecraft. These
products are only released when values are reset. Each file provides an update and contains
the history for the entire mission.

4.7 Housekeeping Products (AHK1B, IHK1B, THR1B,


TNK1B, MAG1B, MAS1B, TIM1B)
The Housekeeping Products contain instrument health and calibration data, which are
collected onboard and are mainly used to monitor the health and consumables onboard the
spacecraft. This data is considered ancillary, but has been used in analysis of the science
data. The following two paragraphs are examples of how these data may be used for this
type of analysis.

4.7.1 Accelerometer bias and scale determination


The accelerometer has an unknown scale and bias in each direction. The bias and scale
are solved for simultaneously with the gravity field. A parameter reported in the AHK1B
file called the proof mass voltage (Vp) has a direct effect on the bias and scale. In some
time spans the Vp was off its nominal value and caused a jump in mainly bias and
possibly scale. Using the time series of Vp (from AHK1B) it is possible to adjust the bias
and scale parameters in the gravity field estimation process to account for time spans
where the Vp is not nominal. This specific information is also available in the Sequence
of Events (SOE) file, see section 4.8. In the SOE file, a time series for non-nominal Vp
values is given, using the Sensor/Event identifier ICUVP.
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4.7.2 Center of Mass Offset management


The Center of Mass Offset (COM) of the GRACE spacecraft is managed to not deviate
more than .1 mm from the ACC proof mass COM. This control is necessary to avoid
parasitic linear accelerations of the ACC proof mass that are introduced by COM when
the spacecraft experiences angular accelerations. The main change in the COM is in the
X direction because two spherical cold gas tanks are positioned on opposite sites of the
COM on the X-axis of the spacecraft. Any differential draining of these tanks results in a
change of the COM. In order to monitor the COM change, it is important to monitor the
amount of mass in the gas tanks. The mass in the tanks can be determined in two ways:
1) use pressure and temperature measurements (TNK1B) and estimate gas mass
2) use thruster firing durations (THR1B) and use accumulated on-time and the
mass flow rate to estimate the total gas drained from a tank
For the real COM monitoring the data from step 2) is calibrated with step 1) and
provides the best COM estimate.

4.8 Sequence of Event File


The Sequence of Events (SOE) file records the change of the state of a specific satellite
sensor or a satellite event, which may alter the processing parameters used for the L1B
processing. The SOE file contains sensor and event time series, which describe the
changes in their state. These time series should be interpreted in the following way: The
sensor/event state remains unchanged until a new valid record appears in the file with
new state information. Next you will find a detailed description and format information
on how the SOE file is organized and the state information for each sensor and event
that is recorded.

The SOE file is a white space delimited file. If the first field is an "x" the line has been
deleted from active use. The fields in the active lines are defined as follows:.

Active lines:

Field 1: gps seconds past J2000, 0 = 1-JAN-2000 12:00:00.0000 GPS = 1-JAN-2000
11:59:47.0000 UTC

Field 2: Spacecraft, "GRACEA" "GRACEB"

Field 3: Sensor/Event identifier
Currently the following sensor/event identifiers are recognized:
ACC AOCS ICUVP IPU IPUR KAMI KBR K_MI KTOFF MTE1 MTE2 QKS
QSA QSB SCA USO VCM VGB VGN VGO VKB VSL
See below for numerical field meanings

Field 4: Number of numerical fields to follow, N

Fields 5: 4+N: Numerical values, for instance which USO is active, GPS antenna POD
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(precision orbit determination) dual-freq. antenna offset. For a description of the fields
for each Sensor/Event identifier see list below.

Fields 5+N: After these field any comment may be place, in general time tag
information on when the active line was inserted in the SOE file

The following Sensor/Event identifiers are defined which include the state information:

ACC #fields = 1
field value = 1: main ICU active
field value = 2: redundant ICU active
Note: ACC identifier is currently not set in the SOE file

AOCS #fields = 1
field value = 0 = AOCS NO_MODE
field value = 1 = AOCS CMCMP (course pointing mode)
field value = 2 = AOCS CIMCMP (course pointing mode)
field value = 3 = AOCS AHM (attitude hold mode)
field value = 4 = AOCS BAHM (back up attitude hold mode)
field value = 5 = AOCS SM (science mode)
field value = 6 = AOCS BSM (back up science mode)

ICUVP #fields =1
field value = 0 = NOMINAL Vp value
field value = 1 = OFF NOMINAL Vp value

IPU #fields = 1
field value = 1 = main IPU active derived from IPU log message
field value = 2 = redundant IPU active derived from IPU log message

IPUR #fields = 3
column 1: field value = 1 Main IPU active
field value = 2 Redundant IPU active
field value = -1 IPU active not known from IPU log message
column 2: field value = time of IPU nudge from IPU log message (gps seconds)
column 3: field value = 1 IPU flash OK
field value = 2 IPU flash corrupted
field value = -1 IPU flash state not known from IPU log message

KAMI #fields = 1
field value = time tag offset to be applied to (KBR) Ka-phase measurement (sec)

KBR #fields = 1
1 = main KBR
2 = redundant KBR
Note KBR key is currently not set in the SOE file
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K_MI #fields = 1
field value = time tag offset to be applied to (KBR) K-phase measurement (sec)

KTOFF #fields = 1
field value = time tag offset to be applied to (KBR) K and Ka-phase measurement
(sec)

MTE1 #fields = 3
column1: field value = X-axis distance traveled by Trim Mass Assembly 1 since
launch (mm)
column2: field value = Y-axis distance traveled by Trim Mass Assembly 1 since
launch (mm)
column3: field value = Z-axis distance traveled by Trim Mass Assembly 1 since
launch (mm)

MTE2 #fields = 3
column 1: field value = X-axis distance traveled by Trim Mass Assembly 2 since
launch (mm)
column2: field value = Y-axis distance traveled by Trim Mass Assembly 2 since
launch (mm)
column3: field value = Z-axis distance traveled by Trim Mass Assembly 2 since
launch (mm)

QKS #fields = 8
column 1: field value = q0 quaternion of SCA1 to K frame rotation
column 2: field value = q1 quaternion of SCA1 to K frame rotation
column 5: field value = q0 quaternion of SCA2 to K frame rotation
column 8: field value = q3 quaternion of SCA2 to K frame rotation where q0 is
the scalar

QSA #fields = 8
column1: field value = q0 quaternion of SCA1 to SRF frame rotation
column2: field value = q1 quaternion of SCA1 to SRF frame rotation
column5: field value = q0 quaternion of SCA2 to SRF frame rotation
column8: field value = q3 quaternion of SCA2 to SRF frame rotation

QSB #fields = 4
column1: field value = q0 quaternion of S/C body to SRF frame rotation
column2: field value = q1 quaternion of S/C body to SRF frame rotation
column4: field value = q3 quaternion of S/C body to SRF frame rotation
Note: QSB is currently not set in SOE file

SCA #fields = 2
column1: field value = 1 = SCA1 is primary head
field value = 2 = SCA2 is primary head
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column2: field value = 1 = SCA1 is primary head
field value = 2 = SCA2 is primary head

USO #fields = 1
field value = 1 main USO for GRACE A
field value = 3 redundant USO on GRACE A
field value = 2 main USO for GRACE B
field value = 4 redundant USO on GRACE B

VCM #fields = 3
column1: field value = X-coordinate of CM in SRF (m)
column2: field value = Y-coordinate of CM in SRF (m)
column3: field value = Z-coordinate of CM in SRF (m)

VGB #fields = 6
column1: field value = X-coordinate of L1 phase center for the backup GPS
antenna in SRF (m)
column2: field value = Y-coordinate of L1 phase center for the backup GPS
antenna in SRF (m)
column3: field value = Z-coordinate of L1 phase center for the backup GPS
antenna in SRF (m)
column4: field value = X-coordinate of L2 phase center for the backup GPS
antenna in SRF (m)
column5: field value = Y-coordinate of L2 phase center for the backup GPS
antenna in SRF (m)
column6: field value = Z-coordinate of L2 phase center for the backup GPS
antenna in SRF (m)

VGN #fields = 6
column1: field value = X-coordinate of L1 phase center for the navigation GPS
antenna in SRF (m)
column2: field value = Y-coordinate of L1 phase center for the navigation GPS
antenna in SRF (m)
column3: field value = Z-coordinate of L1 phase center for the navigation GPS
antenna in SRF (m)
column4: field value = X-coordinate of L2 phase center for the navigation GPS
antenna in SRF (m)
column5: field value = Y-coordinate of L2 phase center for the navigation GPS
antenna in SRF (m)
column6: field value = Z-coordinate of L2 phase center for the navigation GPS
antenna in SRF (m)

VGO #fields = 6
column1: field value = X-coordinate of L1 phase center for the occultation GPS
antenna in SRF (m)
column2: field value = Y-coordinate of L1 phase center for the occultation GPS
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antenna in SRF (m)
column3: field value = Z-coordinate of L1 phase center for the occultation GPS
antenna in SRF (m)
column4: field value = X-coordinate of L2 phase center for the occultation GPS
antenna in SRF (m)
column5: field value = Y-coordinate of L2 phase center for the occultation GPS
antenna in SRF (m)
column6: field value = Z-coordinate of L2 phase center for the occultation GPS
antenna in SRF (m)

VKB #fields = 3
column1: field value = X-coordinate of KBR phase center in SRF (m)
column2: field value = Y-coordinate of KBR phase center in SRF (m)
column3: field value = Z-coordinate of KBR phase center in SRF (m)

VSL #fields = 3
column1: field value = X-coordinate of SLR phase center in SRF (m)
column2: field value = Y-coordinate of SLR phase center in SRF (m)
column3: field value = Z-coordinate of SLR phase center in SRF (m)

The remainder of the line is arbitrary but will include the UTC time that the line was
added to the file and possible other arbitrary comments.

Currently the file is sorted on the Time Field (field 1 of non-deleted lines).

Examples:

0.0
GRACEB ACC
1
1
0.0
GRACEB QKS
8
0.3800290947 0.9249498818 -0.0067473944
0.0002758285 0.3789188498 -0.9253766203
0.0028558974 0.0095110300
0.0
GRACEB QSB
4
0.0
0.0
0.0
0.0
0.0
GRACEB VGB
6
-1.56125
-0.300
-0.19 -1.56125
-0.300
-0.19
0.0
GRACEB VGN
6
0.000602
0.000754
-0.45173
0.000602
0.000754
-0.47596
0.0
GRACEB VGO
6
-1.56125
0.000 -0.19 -1.56125
0.000 -0.19
0.0
GRACEB VSL
3
-0.6000
-0.3275
0.3300
100302780.0 GRACEA MTE1 3
16.115e-3
-3.0225e-3
4.03e-3
101531422
GRACEA AOCS 1
5
SM KBR-Calibrations
105746450
GRACEA KTOFF 1
0.0
1.0
GRACEB VKB
3
1.472580
-0.000088
0.003319
121227065
GRACEA SCA
2
2
1
122997938
GRACEB ICUVP 1
0
NOMINAL
123715827
GRACEB AOCS 1
6
BSM Normal-Operations
123853640.0 GRACEA K_MI 1
0.00
127123270.0 GRACEA KAMI 1
0.00
127947910
GRACEB IPUR 3
-1
127947897
2
128032830
GRACEB IPU
1
1
73346640.0
GRACEA VCM
3
-0.2350e-3
0.12561e-3
-0.11442e-3
73945590.0
GRACEA MTE2 3
23.7825e-3
-12.71e-3
11.5775e-3
87316760.0
GRACEA QSA
8
0.3758022940 0.9266991916 0.0003448607 0.0010607145 0.3835688821 -0.9235064871
-0.0007310729
-0.0031853829
95910570
GRACEB USO
1
4

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4.9 Report files


Daily processing report files are provided for all GRACE L1 products. These reports provide
further data quality analysis and contain detailed information on time gaps, RMS fit to data,
quality flag counts, overview of quality flags per product, etc. See Appendix B for content
and format information.
Report files for all processed Level 1B data are viualized at the following GRACE Data
monitoring URL: http://gravity.jpl.nasa.gov/monitor

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5 LEVEL 1B DATA CONTENT AND FORMAT


5.1 Overview
PO.DAAC processes, archives and distributes GRACE Level 1B data. The Level 1B data
are organized into separate files for the related science instruments and subsystems onboard
the twin GRACE spacecrafts. Each Level 1B product file has a different format that is
described in detail in Section 6, GRACE Level 1B File Formats. All data from one GPS day
are stored in one file.

5.2 File Structure


Each file contains an ASCII header and is a constant record length, except for GPS1B,
TNK1B, and MAS1B. The header record consists of multiple 80 byte records. The last
header record is labeled "END OF HEADER". After the last header record, multiple data
records are written. The data records are defined according to the product identification
labels specified in Section 5.3.

5.2.1 Header Description


Headers provide identification, processing history and content information. Processing
history includes software version and processing time. Content information includes data
start and end times and number of data records. Processing time and build/version should be
used to ensure that the latest version is being used if file reissue is necessary.
The ASCII header for each data format contains the following information:
/
/
/
/
/
/
/
/
/
/
/
/
/
/
/
/
/
/
/
/
/
/
/
/
/

PRODUCER AGENCY
:
PRODUCER INSTITUTION
:
FILE TYPE ipACC1BF
:
FILE FORMAT 0=BINARY 1=ASCII :
NUMBER OF HEADER RECORDS
:
SOFTWARE VERSION
:
SOFTWARE LINK TIME
:
REFERENCE DOCUMENTATION
:
SATELLITE NAME
:
SENSOR NAME
:
TIME EPOCH (GPS TIME)
:
TIME FIRST OBS(SEC PAST EPOCH):
TIME LAST OBS(SEC PAST EPOCH) :
NUMBER OF DATA RECORDS
:
PRODUCT CREATE START TIME(UTC):
PRODUCT CREATE END TIME(UTC) :
FILESIZE (BYTES)
:
FILENAME
:
PROCESS LEVEL (1A OR 1B)
:
INPUT FILE NAME
:
INPUT FILE TIME TAG (UTC)
:
..
(list of all input files plus)
(creation time tag information)
..

Version 1.3

NASA
JPL
8
1
19
@(#) Bin2AsciiLevel1.c
1.5 03/11/01
@(#) 2001-04-17 08:10:27 glk bart
GRACE Level 1 Software Handbook
GRACE B
ACC GRACE B
2000-01-01 12:00:00
99921000.000000 (2003-03-02 23:50: 0.00)
99935400.000000 (2003-03-03 03:50: 0.00)
2881
2001-04-17 15:10:59
2001-04-17 15:10:59
157194
ACC1B_2003-03-02_B_01.pass
1B
TMBJ0<-GR1-0-RDC-RT-SC+NZ_2003_158_10_24_1_2.bj
TMBJ0<-2003-06-07 10:24:00 by RDC

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/

END OF HEADER

5.2.2 Data Description


To find the associated data format for each product, see Chapter 6, GRACE Level 1B Data
Formats.

5.3 File Naming Convention


The file naming convention for level 1B data is
PRDID_YYYY-MM-DD_S_RL.EXT
where
PRDID
YYYY
MM
DD
S
RL
EXT

= product identification label, e.g. ACC1B (see table below)


= year
= month
= day of month
= GRACE satellite identifier
(A, B, or X = combined product of GRACE A and B)
= data product version number
= file extension indicating binary (dat) or ascii (asc) files

For example, the file ACC1B_2003-03-03_A_00.dat contains Level-1B Accelerometer data


for March 3, 2003 from the GRACE-A satellite, version 0, in binary format.
Product Identification Labels
PRDID
ACC1B
AHK1B
CLK1B
GNV1B
GPS1B
IHK1B
KBR1B
MAG1B
MAS1B
QKS1B
QSA1B
QSB1B
SCA1B
THR1B
TIM1B
TNK1B
USO1B
Version 1.3

Description
Level 1B Accelerometer data
Level 1B Accelerometer House keeping data
Level 1B Satellite clock solution (from OD software + CLK1A)
Level 1B navigation solution (from OD software)
Level 1B GPS flight data
Level 1B IPU Housekeeping data
Level 1B KBR ranging data
Level 1B Magnetic Torque Rod Activation data + Magnetometer data
Level 1B Spacecraft mass as a function of time
Rotation from Star Camera Frames into K-Band Frame
Rotation From Star Camera Frames into SRF
Rotation From Satellite Body Frame into SRF
Level 1B star camera data (compressed/combined SCA data)
Level 1B thruster activation data
Level 1B OBDH time mapping to GPS time
Level 1B Gas tank sensor data + auxiliary data for COM management
Oscillator frequency data (derived from OD software output)
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VCM1B
VGB1B
VGN1B
VGO1B
VKB1B
VSL1B

Vector offset file for Center of Mass solution from calibration


maneuvers or tracking model in SRF
Vector offset file for GPS Backup Navigation Antenna in SRF
Vector offset file for GPS Main Antenna in SRF
Vector offset file for GPS Occultation Antenna in SRF
Vector offset file for KBR phase centers in SRF
Vector offset file for SLR Corner cube reflector offset in SRF

5.4 ASCII versions of Level-1B format


For all Level-1B formats an ASCII version of the data is defined. The headers for the ASCII
files are identical to the binary data files with only relevant information changed (e.g. FILE
FORMAT). The sequence of the data is the same as defined in Chapter 6, GRACE Level 1B
File Formats. All data entries are white-space delimited. The binary Level 1B files can be
converted into ASCII Level 1B format files by using the Bin2AsciiLevel1 software utility,
which is distributed with the Level 1B data.
Note: Bitfields are represented as defined in Section 1.5.4 Bitfield order, e.g., bit 0 is the last
entry in bitfield.

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6 GRACE LEVEL 1B DATA PRODUCT FORMATS


6.1 Overview
Section 6 describes the format of the data records for all GRACE Level 1B data files.

6.2 Accelerometer Data Format Record (ACC1B)


Parameter

Definition

Data
Type

Byte Units
Length

gps_time

GPS time, seconds past 12:00:00, noon 01-Jan-2000

Integer

GRACE_id

GRACE satellite identifier

Character

N/A

lin_accl_x

Linear acceleration along x-axis

Double
Precision
Double
Precision
Double
Precision
Double
Precision
Double
Precision
Double
Precision
Double
Precision
Double
Precision
Double
Precision
Unsigned
Character

m/s2

m/s2

m/s2

rad/s2

rad/s2

rad/s2

m/s2

m/s2

m/s2

N/A

lin_accl_y
lin_accl_z
ang_accl_x

Linear acceleration along y-axis


Linear acceleration along z-axis
Angular acceleration about x-axis

ang_accl_y

Angular acceleration about y-axis

ang_accl_z

Angular acceleration about z-axis

acl_x_res

Linear acceleration along x-axis residual with fit

acl_y_res

Linear acceleration along y-axis residual with fit

acl_z_res

Linear acceleration along z-axis residual with fit

qualflg

Data quality flag (LSB = bit 0)


bit 0 = Proof mass voltage out of nominal range
bit 1 = Not Defined
bit 2 = if any linear ACC component has fit residual > 10
microns/s2
bit 3 = extrapolated clock correction >5s but < 15s from
fit center
bit 4 = extrapolated clock correction < 5s from fit center
bit 5 = filled data > 15s from fit center
bit 6 = filled data > 5s but < 15s from fit center
bit 7 = filled data < 5s from fit center

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6.3 Clock Data Format Record (CLK1B)


Parameter

Definition

Data
Type

Byte Units
Length

rcv_time

Receiver time, seconds past 12:00:00, noon 01-Jan-2000

Integer

GRACE_id

GRACE satellite identifier

Character

N/A

clock_id
eps_time

Clock identifier
Level 1B clock offset where
GPS time = time_rcv + eps_time

Byte
Double
Precision

1
8

N/A
s

eps_err

Formal error on eps_time

Double
Precision

eps_drift

Clock drift

Double
Precision

s/s

drift_err

Formal error on eps_drift

s/s

qualflg

Data quality flag (LSB

Double
Precision
Unsigned
Character

N/A

bit
bit
bit
bit
bit
bit
bit
bit

= bit 0)

0 = 1 > linear extrapolation not valid after rcv_time


1 = 1 > linear extrapolation not valid before rcv_time
2 = overlap data missing before start midnight
3 = overlap data missing after start midnight
4 = overlap data missing before end midnight
5 = overlap data missing after end midnight
6 = Not Defined
7 = Not Defined

6.4 GPS Flight Data Format Record (GPS1B)


Parameter

Definition

Data
Type

Byte
Length

Units

Integer

rcvtime_frac

Receiver time, seconds past 12:00:00, noon 01-Jan2000


Receiver time, microseconds part

Integer

microseconds

GRACE_id

GRACE satellite identifier

Character

N/A

prn_id
ant_id

GPS spacecraft PRN number or GRACE id number

Byte
Byte

1
1

N/A
N/A

Unsigned
Integer

N/A

rcvtime_intg

prod_flag

GPS or KBR antenna id on GRACE spacecraft


ant_id = 1 GPS navigation antenna
ant_id = 2 GPS occultation antenna
ant_id = 3 KBR antenna
Product flag (LSB = bit 0)
Bitmask set to indicate presence of data type
according to the following:
bit 0 = C/A pseudo range
bit 1 = L1 pseudo range

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bit 2 = L2 pseudo range
bit 3 = C/A carrier phase
bit 4 = L1 carrier phase
bit 5 = L2 carrier phase
bit 6 = SNR C/A channel
bit 7 = SNR L1 channel
bit 8 = SNR L2 channel
bit 9 = C/A receiver channel
bit 10 = L1 receiver channel
bit 11 = L2 receiver channel
bit 12 = Not used for GPS1B
bit 13 = Not used for GPS1B
bit 14 = Not used for GPS1B
bit 15 = Not used for GPS1B
qualflg

Data quality flag (LSB = bit 0)

Unsigned
Character

N/A

CA_range

bit 0 = phase break occurred in L1/K/CA


bit 1 = phase break occurred in L2/Ka
bit 2 = cycle slip detected in L1/K/CA
bit 3 = cycle slip detected in L2/Ka
bit 4 = Not Defined
bit 5 = Not Defined
bit 6 = Not Defined
bit 7 = Not Defined
C/A pseudo range

Double
Precision

L1_range

L1 pseudo range

Double
Precision

L2_range

L2 pseudo range

Double
Precision

CA_phase

C/A carrier phase

Double
Precision

L1_phase

L1 carrier phase

Double
Precision

L2_phase

L2 ion-smoothed carrier phase

Double
Precision

CA_SNR

SNR C/A channel (units + integration time)

Unsigned
Integer

V/V

L1_SNR

SNR L1 channel

Unsigned
Integer

V/V

L2_SNR

SNR L2 channel

Unsigned
Integer

V/V

CA chan

C/A receiver channel

Unsigned
Integer

V/V

L1_chan

L1 receiver channel

Unsigned
Integer

V/V

L2_chan

L2 receiver channel

Unsigned
Integer

V/V

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6.5 GPS Navigation Data Format Record (GNV1B)


Parameter

Definition

Data
Type

Byte Units
Length

GPS time, seconds past 12:00:00, noon 01-Jan-2000

Integer

GRACE_id

GRACE satellite identifier

Character

N/A

coord_ref

Coordinate reference frame where


E = Earth-fixed
'I' = Inertial

Character

N/A

xpos

Position, x value (ITRF)

ypos

Position, y value (ITRF)

zpos

Position, z value (ITRF)

xpos_err

Formal error on x position

ypos_err

Formal error on y position

zpos_err

Formal error on z position

xvel

Velocity along x-axis (ITRF)

m/s

yvel

Velocity along y-axis (ITRF)

m/s

zvel

Velocity along z-axis (ITRF)

Double
Precision
Double
Precision
Double
Precision
Double
Precision
Double
Precision
Double
Precision
Double
Precision
Double
Precision
Double
Precision
Double
Precision
Double
Precision
Double
Precision
Unsigned
Character

m/s

m/s

m/s

m/s

N/A

gps_time

xvel_err

Formal error in velocity along x-axis

yvel_err

Formal error in velocity along y-axis

zvel_err

Formal error in velocity along z-axis

qualflg

Data quality flag (LSB = bit 0)


bit
bit
bit
bit
bit
bit
bit
bit

Version 1.3

0 = Not Defined
1 = Not Defined
2 = overlap data missing before start midnight
3 = overlap data missing after start midnight
4 = overlap data missing before end midnight
5 = overlap data missing after end midnight
6 = Not Defined
7 = Not Defined

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6.6 IPU Housekeeping Data Format Record (IHK1B)


Parameter
time_intg
time_frac
time_ref
GRACE_id
qualflg

Definition

Sensorname
[MAXSENSORNAME]

Units

Integer

Integer

microseconds

Character

N/A

Character

N/A

Data quality flag (LSB = bit 0)

Unsigned
Character

N/A

Character

N/A

Double
Precision
Character

0 = Not Defined
1 = Not Defined
2 = Not Defined
3 = Not Defined
4 = Not Defined
5 = Not Defined
6 = Not Defined
7 = Not Defined

Observation type
V = Voltage in Volts
T = Temperature in Deg C
A = Current in Amperes
Value of observation

sensorvalue

Byte
Length

Measurement time, integer seconds


past 12:00:00, noon 01-Jan-2000
Measurement time, microseconds
part
Time reference frame where
R = Receiver time
G = GSP time
GRACE satellite identifier

bit
bit
bit
bit
bit
bit
bit
bit
sensortype

Data
Type

Null terminated sensor name

N/A

6.7 KBR Data Format Record (KBR1B)


Parameter

Definition

Data
Type

Byte
Length

Units

GPS time, seconds past 12:00:00, noon 01-Jan-2000

Integer

Double
Precision

range_rate

Biased range between GRACE A and B digitally


filtered but uncorrected except for the ionosphere to
correct for the light time, and the antenna offsets use:
biased_range + lighttime_corr +ant_centr_corr meters
Range rate between GRACE A and B

m/s

range_accl

Range acceleration between GRACE A and B

m/s2

iono_corr

Ionospheric range correction between


GRACE A and B for Ka frequencies

Double
Precision
Double
Precision
Double
Precision

gps_time
biased_range

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lighttime_corr

light time range correction between GRACE A and B

lighttime_rate

ant_centr_corr

light time range rate correction between GRACE A


and B
light time range acceleration correction between
GRACE A and B
Antenna phase center range correction

ant_centr_rate

Antenna phase center range rate correction

lighttime_accl

ant_centr_accl

Antenna phase center range acceleration correction

K_A_SNR

SNR K band for GRACE A

Ka_A_SNR

SNR Ka band for GRACE A

K_B_SNR

SNR K band for GRACE B

Ka_B_SNR

SNR Ka band for GRACE B

qualflg

Data quality flag (LSB = bit 0)

Double
Precision
Double
Precision
Double
Precision
Double
Precision
Double
Precision
Double
Precision
Unsigned
Integer
Unsigned
Integer
Unsigned
Integer
Unsigned
Integer
Unsigned
Character

m/s

m/s2

m/s

m/s2

0.1 dbHz
0.1 dbHz
0.1 dbHz
0.1 dbHz
N/A

2
2
2
1

bit 0 = phase break


bit 1 = extrapolated states for lighttime_corr
bit 2 = model eci attitudes for ant_centr_corr
bit 3 = extrapolated clock correction > 5s from fit
center
bit 4 = extrapolated clock correction < 5s from fit
center
bit 5 = data corrected for timetag bias of either K or
Ka phase
bit 6 = filled data > 5s from fit center
bit 7 = filled data < 5s from fit center

6.8 Magnetometer and Magnettorquer Data Format Record


(MAG1B)
Parameter

Definition

Data
Type

time_intg

Activation time, integer seconds past 12:00:00, noon


01-Jan-2000
Activation time, microseconds part

Integer

Integer

Time reference frame where


R = Receiver time
G = GSP time
GRACE satellite identifier

Character

N/A

Character

N/A

x-axis (SF) component of measured earth magnetic


field

Real

microT

time_frac
time_ref
GRACE_id
MfvX_RAW

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Length

Units
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MfvY_RAW

Real

microT

Real

microT

Real

mA

Real

mA

Real

mA

Real

mA

Real

mA

Real

mA

MF_BCalX

y-axis (SF) component of measured earth magnetic


field
z-axis (SF) component of measured earth magnetic
field
current of magnettorquer 1 A
(positive current x)
current of magnettorquer 2 A
(positive current y)
current of magnettorquer 3 A
(positive current z)
current of magnettorquer 1 B
(positive current x)
current of magnettorquer 2 B
(positive current y)
current of magnettorquer 3 B
(positive current z)
magnetic field calibration factor for X

Real

MF_BCalY

magnetic field calibration factor for Y

Real

MF_BCalZ

magnetic field calibration factor for Z

Real

magnetic torquer calibration factor

Real

Data quality flag (LSB = bit 0)

Unsigned
Character

MfvZ_RAW
torque1A
torque2A
torque3A
torque1B
torque2B
torque3B

torque_cal
qualflg

N/A

bit 0 = 0 > GPS Receiver Time


bit 0 =1 > Space Craft Elapsed Time
bit 1 = 0 > Pulse Sync
= 1 > no Pulse Sync
bit 2 = Not Defined
bit 3 = Not Defined
bit 4 = Not Defined
bit 5 = Not Defined
bit 6 = Not Defined
bit 7 = Not Defined

6.9 Spacecraft Mass Data Format Record (MAS1B)


Parameter
time_intg
time_frac
time_ref

Version 1.3

Definition

Data
Type

Byte
Length

Units

Measurement time, integer seconds past


12:00:00, noon 01-Jan-2000
Measurement time, microseconds part

Integer

Integer

microseconds

Time reference frame where


R = Receiver time
G = GSP time

Character

N/A

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GRACE_id
qualflg

GRACE satellite identifier

Character

N/A

Data quality flag (LSB = bit 0)

Unsigned
Character

N/A

Character

N/A

Double
Precision
Double
Precision
Double
Precision
Double
Precision
Double
Precision
Double
Precision
Double
Precision
Double
Precision

kg

kg

kg

kg

kg

kg

kg

kg

bit
bit
bit
bit
bit
bit
bit
bit
prod_flag

mass_thr

0 = Not Defined
1 = Not Defined
2 = Not Defined
3 = Not Defined
4 = Not Defined
5 = Not Defined
6 = Not Defined
7 = Not Defined

Product flag (LSB = bit 0)


Bitmask set to indicate presence of data type
according to the following:
bit 0 = SC Mass from thruster usage
bit 1 = SC Mass error bit 0
bit 2 = SC Mass from tank observations
bit 3 = SC Mass error bit 2
bit 4 = gas mass tank 1 (thr. usage)
bit 5 = gas mass tank 2 (thr. usage)
bit 6 = gas mass tank 1 (tank obs)
bit 7 = gas mass tank 2 (tank obs)
Spacecraft mass based on thruster usage

mass_thr_err

Spacecraft mass error from thruster usage

mass_tnk

Spacecraft mass from tank observations

mass_tnk_err

Spacecraft mass error from tank observations

gas_mass_thr1

Mass of gas in tank 1 based on thruster usage

gas_mass_thr2

Mass of gas in tank 2 based on thruster usage

gas_mass_tnk1

Mass of gas in tank 1 based on tank


observations
Mass of gas in tank 2 based on tank
observations

gas_mass_tnk2

6.10 Star Camera Assembly Data Format Record (SCA1B)


Parameter
gps_time
GRACE_id

Version 1.3

Definition

Data
Type

Byte Units
Length

GPS time, seconds past 12:00:00, noon 01-Jan-2000

Integer

GRACE satellite identifier

Character

N/A

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sca_id

quatangle

SCA identification number:


1 = Star camera number 1
2 = Star camera number 2
3 = IMU
4 = Combination of 1 + 2
Cos mu/2 element of quaternion

quaticoeff

I element of quaternion rotation axis

quatjcoeff

J element of quaternion rotation axis

quatkcoeff

K element of quaternion rotation axis

qual_rss

rss of formal error of quaternions

qualflg

Data quality flag (LSB = bit 0)


bit
bit
bit
bit
bit
bit
bit
bit

Byte

N/A

Double
Precision
Double
Precision
Double
Precision
Double
Precision
Double
Precision
Unsigned
Character

N/A

N/A

N/A

N/A

N/A

N/A

0 = filled data at T
1 = filled data at T + 1 sec
2 = filled data at T + 2 sec
3 = data from 1 star camera only
4 = extrapolated clock correction
5 = Not Defined
6 = low rate data from 2nd SCA
7 = low rate data from 1st SCA

6.11 Thrusters Data Format Record (THR1B)


Parameter

Definition

Data
Type

time_intg

Activation time, integer seconds


past 12:00:00, noon 01-Jan-2000
Activation time, microseconds part

Integer

Integer

microseconds

Time reference frame where


R = Receiver time
G = GSP time
GRACE satellite identifier

Character

N/A

Character

N/A

Count of number of work cycles


that each thruster has been
activated (integer will wrap after
4294967295)
Thruster on time for this time
epoch
Accumulated thruster firing
duration time (integer will wrap
after 4294967295)
Data quality flag (LSB = bit 0)

Unsigned
Integer

Unsigned
Integer
Unsigned
Integer

millisec

millisec

Unsigned
Character

N/A

time_frac
time_ref
GRACE_id
thrust_count[MAXTHRSTRS]

on_time[MAXTHRSTRS]
accum_dur[MAXTHRSTRS]
qualflg

Byte
Length

Units

bit 0 = 1 On time not calculated


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bit 1 = 1 Multiple unaccounted
thrusts prior to current record
bit 2 = Not Defined
bit 3 = Not Defined
bit 4 = Not Defined
bit 5 = Not Defined
bit 6 = No OBDH->Receiver time
mapping
bit 7 = No Clock correction
available

6.12 Mapping of OBDH Time to Receiver time (TIM1B)


Parameter
obdh_time

GRACE_id
TS_suppid

gpstime_intg
gpstime_frac
first_icu_blknr
final_icu_blknr
qualflg

Definition

Data
Type

Byte
Length

Units

OBDH time, can be the following:


1 = Receiver time seconds past 12:00:00 noon
01-Jan-2000
2 = Pseudo receiver offset time due to sync
4 = Space Craft elapsed time
GRACE satellite identifier

Integer

Character

N/A

OBDH timestamp supplementary ID value bits


description:
0 = [00000000] = SCET
1 = [00000001] = GPS time
2 = [00000010] = SCET + Pulse Sync
3 = [00000011] = GPS time + Pulse Sync
7 = [00000111] =GPS time + Pulse Sync +
plus IPU time pkt received
Measurement time, integer seconds past
12:00:00 noon 01-01-2000
Measurement time, microseconds part

Integer

N/A

Integer

Integer

microseconds

First ICU block number for Timestamp


-1 indicates no ACC data available
Final ICU block number for Timestamp
-1 indicates no ACC data available
Data quality flag (LSB = bit 0)

Integer

N/A

Integer

N/A

Unsigned
Character

N/A

bit 0 = Delta OBDH time != 1 sec


bit 1 = Multiple ICU blocks
bit 2 = Sync process started
bit 3 = GPS time mapping not defined
bit 4 = Missed Antenna state packet
bit 5 = gdel flag set in one or more ICU data
blocks
bit 6 = Unable to compute GPS mapping
bit 7 = Not Defined

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6.13 Cold Gas Tank Data Format Record (TNK1B)


Parameter
time_intg

Definition

Data
Type

Byte
Length

Units

Activation time, integer seconds past 12:00:00,


noon 01-Jan-2000
Activation time, microseconds part

Integer

Integer

microseconds

Time reference frame where


R = Receiver time
G = GSP time
GRACE satellite identifier

Character

N/A

Character

N/A

Cold gas tank id:


Tank 1 on -x axis
Tank 2 on +x axis
Data quality flag (LSB = bit 0)

Character

N/A

Unsigned
Character

N/A

Character

N/A

Real

bar

Real

bar

skin_temp

Pressure at the reference point on the pressure


regulator housing
Skin temperature of cold tank

Real

Deg C

skin_temp_r

Skin temperature of cold tank (redundant)

Real

Deg C

adap_temp

tank adaptor temperature

Real

Deg C

time_frac
time_ref
GRACE_id
tank_id
qualflg

bit 0 = 0 > GPS Receiver Time


bit 0 = 1 > Space Craft Elapsed Time
bit 1 = 0 > Pulse Sync
= 1 > no Pulse Sync
bit 2 = Not Defined
bit 3 = Not Defined
bit 4 = Not Defined
bit 5 = Not Defined
bit 6 = Not Defined
bit 7 = Not Defined
prod_flag

tank_pres
reg_pres

Version 1.3

Product flag (LSB = bit 0)


Bitmask set to indicate presence of data type
according to the following:
bit 0 = Tank pressure
bit 1 = Regulator pressure
bit 2 = Tank Skin temp (nominal)
bit 3 = Tank Skin temp (redundant)
bit 4 = Tank adaptor temp
bit 5 = Not Defined
bit 6 = Not Defined
bit 7 = Not Defined
Cold tank internal pressure

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6.14 Ultra Stable Oscillator Frequency Data Format Record


(USO1B)
Parameter

Definition

Data
Type

Byte Units
Length

gps_time

GPS time, seconds past 12:00:00, noon 01-Jan-2000

Integer

GRACE_id

GRACE satellite identifier

Character

N/A

uso_id

USO satellite identifier

Character

N/A

uso_freq

Frequency of USO

Hz

K_freq

K band frequency of KBR

Hz

Ka_freq

Ka band frequency of KBR

Double
Precision
Double
Precision
Double
Precision
Unsigned
Character

Hz

N/A

qualflg

Data quality flag (LSB = bit 0)


bit 0 = 1 -> linear extrapolation not valid AFTER rcv_time
bit 1 = 1 -> linear extrapolation not valid BEFORE
rcv_time
bit 2 = Not Defined
bit 3 = Not Defined
bit 4 = Not Defined
bit 5 = Not Defined
bit 6 = Not Defined
bit 7 = Not Defined

6.15 Vector Orientation Data Format Record (VGN1B,


VGO1B, VGB1B, VCM1B, VKB1B, VSL1B )
Parameter

Definition

Data
Type

Byte Units
Length

gps_time

GPS time, seconds past 12:00:00, noon 01-Jan-2000

Integer

GRACE_id

GRACE satellite identifier

Character

N/A

Magnitude of vector

Double
Precision
Double
Precision
Double
Precision
Double
Precision

mag
cosx

Direction cosine of vector with satellite x-axis

cosy

Direction cosine of vector with satellite y-axis

cosz

Direction cosine of vector with satellite z-axis

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qualflg

Data quality flag (LSB = bit 0)


bit
bit
bit
bit
bit
bit
bit
bit

Version 1.3

Unsigned
Character

N/A

0 = L1 phase center offset vector


1 = L2 phase center offset vector
2 = Not Defined
3 = Not Defined
4 = Not Defined
5 = Not Defined
6 = Not Defined
7 = Not Defined

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Appendix A ACRONYMS
ACC
AF
AOD1B
CHAMP
DLR
ECI
GFZ
GHz
GPS
GRACE
GSOC
ISDC
ITRF
JPL
KBR
LRR
NASA
OCN1B
PO.DAAC
RDC
RINEX
SDS
SF
SOE
SRF
USO
UTC
UTCSR

SuperSTAR Accelerometer
Accelerometer Frame
Atmosphere and Ocean De-aliasing level-1B product
Challenging Minisatellite Payload
Deutsches Zentrum Fr Luft und Raumfahrt
Earth Centered Inertial
GeoForschungsZentrum
gigahertz
Global Positioning System
Gravity Recovery And Climate Experiment
German Space Operations Center
Integrated System Data Center
International Terrestrial Reference Frame
Jet Propulsion Laboratory
K-Band Ranging Assembly
Laser Retro Reflector
National Aeronautics and Space Administration
Ocean level-1B product
Physical Oceanography Distributed Active Archive Center
Raw Data Center at DLR
Receiver Independent Exchange Format
Science Data System
Satellite Frame
Sequence of Events file
Science Reference Frame
Ultra-Stable Oscillator
Coordinated Universal Time
University of Texas at Austin, Center for Space Research

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Appendix B Report Files


Appendix B describes the format of the report files for all GRACE Level 1B data.

Report files are organized into separate files for each of the Level 1A and Level 1B data
products. Data entries are white-space delimited.

Level 1B Parameters 1-10*
Parameter
Number

Definition

Units

01
02
03
04
05
06
07
08
09
10

FileName
FileTtag
ProcessTtag
FirstDataPointTtag
LastDataPointTtag
Nrecs (number of data records)
TimeGapAvg (average data gap)
TimeGapVar (variance data gap)
TimeGapMin (minimum time gap)
TimeGapMax (maximum time gap)

Minimum
Value

Maximum
Value

sec in GPS time


sec in GPS time
sec in GPS time
1
sec
sec
sec
sec

*Note: The first ten parameters are the same for every report file.
ACC1B : Level 1B Accelerometer data
Parameter
Number

Definition

Units

11
12
13
14

NQualBits value=8
BitCount0 : Vp out of nominal range
BitCount1
BitCount2 : any linear ACC component has fit
2
residual > 10 microns/s
BitCount3 : extrapolated clock correction >5s
but <15s from fit center
BitCount4 : extrapolated clock correction < 5s
from fit center
BitCount5 : filled data > 15s from fit center
BitCount6 : filled data > 5s but < 15s from fit
center
BitCount7: filled data < 5s from fit center
Nr_nodatagapfill : number of data gaps not
filled
CRMS_lin_accl_x : compression rms
CRMS_lin_accl_y : compression rms
CRMS_lin_accl_z : compression rms
CRMS_ang_accl_x :compression rms
CRMS_ang_accl_y :compression rms
CRMS_ang_accl_z :compression rms
rel_bias_x : relative bias in x-direction

m/sec
2
m/sec
2
m/sec
2
rad/sec
2
rad/sec
2
rad/sec
2
nm/sec

15
16
17
18
19
20
21
22
23
24
25
26
27
Version 1.3

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Minimum
Value

Maximum
Value

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28
29
30
31
32
33
34
35

rel_bias_y : relative bias in y-direction


rel_bias_z : relative bias in z-direction
rel_scale_x : relative bias in x-direction
rel_scale_y : relative bias in y-direction
rel_scale_z : relative bias in z-direction
rel_res_x : relative res in x-direction
rel_res_y : relative res in y-direction
rel_res_z : relative res in z-direction

nm/sec
2
nm/sec

nm/sec
2
nm/sec
2
nm/sec

AHK1B : Level 1B Accelerometer Housekeeping data


Parameter
Number

Definition

11
12

NQualBits value=8
BitCount0 : 0 -> GPS Receiver Time; 1 ->
Space Craft Elapsed Time
BitCount1 : 0 -> Pulse Sync; 1 -> no Pulse
Sync
BitCount2 : ICU board (0 = nominal, 1 =
redundant)
BitCount3 : Invalid ACC (GDEL) timing
BitCount4 : ACC Mode (0 = Normal Range
Mode; 1 = Low Range Mode)
BitCount5
BitCount6 : No OBDH->Receiver time mapping
BitCount7 : No Clock correction available

13
14
15
16
17
18
19

Units

Minimum
Value

Maximum
Value

Units

Minimum
Value

Maximum
Value

Units

Minimum
Value

Maximum
Value

TIM1B : Level 1B OBDH time mapping to GPS time


Parameter
Number
11
12
13
14
15
16
17
18
19

Definition
NQualBits value=8
BitCount0 : Delta OBDH time != 1 sec
BitCount1 : Multiple icu blocks
BitCount2 : Sync process started
BitCount3 : GPS time mapping not defined
BitCount4 : Missed Antenna state packet
BitCount5 : gdel flag set in one or more ICU
data blocks
BitCount6 : Unable to compute GPS mapping
BitCount7

IHK1B : Level 1B IPU Housekeeping data


Parameter
Number

Definition

11
12
13
14
15
16
17
18
19

NQualBits value=8
BitCount0
BitCount1
BitCount2
BitCount3
BitCount4
BitCount5
BitCount6 : No OBDH->Receiver time mapping
BitCount7 : No Clock correction available

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CLK1B : Level 1B Satellite Clock solution (from OD software + CLK1A)
Parameter
Number

Definition

11
12

NQualBits value=8
BitCount0 : linear extrapolation not valid
AFTER rcv_time
BitCount1 : linear extrapolation not valid
BEFORE rcv_time
BitCount2 : overlap data missing before
start midnight
BitCount3 : overlap data missing after start
midnight
BitCount4 : overlap data missing before
end midnight
BitCount5 : overlap data missing after end
midnight
BitCount6
BitCount7
overlap_bias_start : Time offset at start
midnight from linear fit
overlap_bias_sigma_start : Sigma Time
offset at start midnight
overlap_slope_start : Relative drift at start
midnight from linear fit
overlap_slope_sigma_start : Sigma
Relative drift at start midnight
overlap_rms_zero_start : raw RMS of
overlap clock difference at start midnight
overlap_rms_fit_start : linear fit RMS of
overlap clock diff. at start midnight

13
14
15
16
17
18
19
20
21
22
23
24
25
26
27
28
29
30
31
32
33
34

Version 1.3

Units

overlap_npoints_start : number of data


points used in clock overlap at start
midnight
overlap_bias_end : Time offset at end
midnight from linear fit
overlap_bias_sigma_end : Sigma Time
offset at end midnight
overlap_slope_end : Relative drift at end
midnight from linear fit
overlap_slope_sigma_end : Sigma
Relative drift at end midnight
overlap_rms_zero_end : raw RMS of
overlap clock difference at end midnight
overlap_rms_fit_end : linear fit RMS of
overlap clock diff. at end midnight
overlap_npoints_end : number of data
points used in clock overlap at end
midnight
nobs_formal_edit : number of tdp solutions
edit based on formal error in tdp file

March, 2010

Minimum
Value

Maximum
Value

nano-sec
nano-sec
nanosec/sec
nanosec/sec
nano-sec
nano-sec
nano-sec
nano-sec
nano-sec
nanosec/sec
nanosec/sec
nano-sec
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GNV1B : Level 1B navigation solution (from OD software)
Parameter
Number
11
12
13
14
15
16
17
18
19
20
21
22
23
24
25
26
27
28
29
30
31
32
33

Definition
NQualBits value=8
BitCount0
BitCount1
BitCount2 : overlap data missing before start
midnight
BitCount3 : overlap data missing after start
midnight
BitCount4 : overlap data missing before end
midnight
BitCount5 : overlap data missing after end
midnight
BitCount6
BitCount7 : formal errors are not available and
set to 0.0
npoints_start : number of overlap point at
midnight start
hpos_rms_start : H position overlap RMS for
midnight start
cpos_rms_start : C position overlap RMS for
midnight start
lpos_rms_start : L position overlap RMS for
midnight start
hvel_rms_start : H velocity overlap RMS for
midnight start
cvel_rms_start : C velocity overlap RMS for
midnight start
lvel_rms_start : L velocity overlap RMS for
midnight start
npoints_end : number of overlap point at
midnight end
hpos_rms_end : H position overlap RMS for
midnight end
cpos_rms_end : C position overlap RMS for
midnight end
lpos_rms_end : L position overlap RMS for
midnight end
hvel_rms_end : H velocity overlap RMS for
midnight end
cvel_rms_end : C velocity overlap RMS for
midnight end
lvel_rms_end : L velocity overlap RMS for
midnight end

Units

Minimum
Value

Maximum
Value

Minimum
Value

Maximum
Value

m
m
m
m/sec
m/sec
m/sec

m
m
m
m/sec
m/sec
m/sec

GPS1B : Level 1B GPS flight data


Parameter
Number
11
12
13
14
Version 1.3

Definition

Units

NQualBits value=8
BitCount0 : phase break occurred in L1/K/CA
BitCount1 : phase break occurred in L2/Ka
BitCount2 : cycle slip detected in L1/K/CA
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15
16
17
18
19
20
21
22
23
24
25

BitCount3 : cycle slip detected in L2/Ka


BitCount4 : L1 SNR < 5
BitCount5 : L2 SNR < 5
BitCount6
BitCount7
crms_CA : compression rms for CA phase
CA_nobs : number of CA phase points
crms_L1 : compression rms for L1 phase
L1_nobs : number of L1 phase points
crms_L2 : compression rms for L2 phase
L2_nobs : number of L2 phase points

m
m
m

KBR1B : Level 1B KBR ranging data


Parameter
Number

Definition

11
12
13

NQualBits value=8
BitCount0 : phase break
BitCount1 : extrapolated states for
lighttime_corr
BitCount2 : extrapolated attitudes for
ant_centr_corr
BitCount3 : extrapolated clock correction > 5s
from fit center
BitCount4 : extrapolated clock correction < 5s
from fit center
BitCount5 : data corrected for timetag bias of
either K or Ka phase
BitCount6 : filled data > 5s from fit center
BitCount7 : filled data < 5s from fit center
crms_dowr : compression rms for dual-1way
range
crms_ion : compression rms for biased Kaband ion correction
arc_length : total arc length of valid dowr data
resid_nobs : number of obs in KBR-GPS range
residuals
resid_rms : RMS of KBR-GPS range residuals
resid_min : minimun KBR-GPS range residual
resid_max : maximum KBR-GPS range
residual
number_of_arcs : Number of continous data
arcs
clkdd_nobs : number of clk dd obs
clkdd_mean : mean of clk dd obs
clkdd_sigma : sigma of clk dd obs
clkdd_min : minimum of clk dd obs
clkdd_max : maximum of clk dd obs
clkdd_rms : rms of clk dd obs

14
15
16
17
18
19
20
21
22
23
24
25
26
27
28
29
30
31
32
33

Units

Minimum
Value

Maximum
Value

cm
cm
cm

picosec
picosec
picosec
picosec
picosec

MAG1B : Level 1B Magnetic Torque Rod Activation + Magnetometer data


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Parameter
Number

Definition

11
12

NQualBits value=8
BitCount0 : 0 -> GPS Receiver Time; 1 ->
Space Craft Elapsed Time
BitCount1 : 0 -> Pulse Sync; 1 -> no Pulse Sync
BitCount2
BitCount3
BitCount4
BitCount5
BitCount6 : No OBDH->Receiver time mapping
BitCount7 : No Clock correction available

13
14
15
16
17
18
19

Units

Minimum
Value

Maximum
Value

USO1B : Oscillator frequency data (derived from OD software output)


Parameter
Number

Definition

11
12

NQualBits value=8
BitCount0 : linear extrapolation not valid AFTER
rcv_time
BitCount1 : linear extrapolation not valid
BEFORE rcv_time
BitCount2
BitCount3
BitCount4
BitCount5
BitCount6
BitCount7

13
14
15
16
17
18
19

Units

Minimum
Value

Maximum
Value

SCA1B : Level 1B star camera data (compressed/combined SCA data)


Parameter
Number
11
12
13
14
15
16
17
18
19
20
21
22
23
24
25
26
Version 1.3

Definition

Units

Minimum
Value

Maximum
Value

NQualBits value=8
BitCount0 : filled data at T
BitCount1 : filled data at T + 1 sec
BitCount2 : filled data at T + 2 sec
BitCount3 : data from 1 star camera only
BitCount4 : extrapolated clock correction
BitCount5
BitCount6 : low rate data from 2nd SCA
BitCount7 : low rate data from 1st SCA
crms_q0_prim : compression rms for q0 for
primary SCA
crms_q1_prim : compression rms for q1 for
primary SCA
crms_q2_prim : compression rms for q2 for
primary SCA
crms_q3_prim : compression rms for q3 for
primary SCA
crms_q0_sec : compression rms for q0 for
secondary SCA
crms_q1_sec : compression rms for q1 for
secondary SCA
crms_q2_sec : compression rms for q2 for
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27
28
29
30
31
32
33
34
35
36
37
38
39
40
41
42
43
44
45
46
47
48
49
50
51
52

Version 1.3

secondary SCA
crms_q3_sec : compression rms for q3 for
secondary SCA
mean_yaw_prim : mean yaw angle (deg) when
eci (primary)
rms_yaw_prim : RMS yaw angle (deg) when
eci (primary)
badn_yaw_prim : bad data points yaw angle if
eci
mean_pitch_prim : mean pitch angle when eci
(primary)
rms_pitch_prim : RMS pitch angle when eci
(primary)
badn_pitch_prim: bad data points pitch angle if
eci
mean_roll_prim : mean roll angle when eci
(primary)
rms_roll_prim : RMS roll angle when eci
(primary)
badn_roll_prim : bad data points roll angle if eci
mean_yaw_sec : mean yaw angle when eci
(secondary)
rms_yaw_sec : RMS yaw angle when eci
(secondary)
badn_yaw_sec : bad data points yaw angle if
eci
mean_pitch_sec : mean pitch angle when eci
(secondary)
rms_pitch_sec : RMS pitch angle when eci
(secondary)
badn_pitch_sec: bad data points pitch angle if
eci
mean_roll_sec : mean roll angle when eci
(secondary)
rms_roll_sec : RMS roll angle when eci
(secondary)
badn_roll_sec : bad data points roll angle if eci
nr_offset : number of offset used in statistics
q2_avg_dif : daily average x-component of diff
quat
q3_avg_dif : daily average y-component of diff
quat
q4_avg_dif : daily average z-component of diff
quat
q2_stdev_dif : daily stddev x-component of diff
quat
q3_stdev_dif : daily stddev y-component of diff
quat
q4_stdev_dif : daily stddev z-component of diff
quat

March, 2010

deg
deg

deg
deg

deg
deg
deg
deg

deg
deg

deg
deg

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TNK1B : Level 1B Gas tank sensor + auxiliary data for COM management
Parameter
Number

Definition

11
12

NQualBits value=8
BitCount0 : 0 -> GPS Receiver Time; 1 ->
Space Craft Elapsed Time
BitCount1 : 0 -> Pulse Sync; 1 -> no Pulse Sync
BitCount2
BitCount3
BitCount4
BitCount5
BitCount6 : No OBDH->Receiver time mapping
BitCount7 : No Clock correction available

13
14
15
16
17
18
19

Units

Minimum
Value

Maximum
Value

Units

Minimum
Value

Maximum
Value

Minimum
Value

Maximum
Value

THR1B : Level 1B thruster activation data


Parameter
Number

Definition

11
12
13

NQualBits value=8
BitCount0 : On time not calculated
BitCount1 : Multiple unaccounted thrusts prior to
current record
BitCount2
BitCount3
BitCount4
BitCount5
BitCount6 : No OBDH->Receiver time mapping
BitCount7 : No Clock correction available

14
15
16
17
18
19

MAS1B : Level 1B Spacecraft Mass as a function of time


Parameter
Number
11
12
13
14
15
16
17
18
19

Version 1.3

Definition

Units

NQualBits value=8
BitCount0
BitCount1
BitCount2
BitCount3
BitCount4
BitCount5
BitCount6 : No OBDH->Receiver time mapping
BitCount7 : No Clock correction available

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QKS1B : Rotation from Star Camera Frames into K-Band Frame
Parameter
Number
11
12
13
14
15
16
17
18
19

Definition

Units

Minimum
Value

Maximum
Value

Minimum
Value

Maximum
Value

Minimum
Value

Maximum
Value

NQualBits value=8
BitCount0
BitCount1
BitCount2
BitCount3
BitCount4
BitCount5
BitCount6
BitCount7

QSB1B : Rotation from Satellite Body frame into SRF


Parameter
Number
11
12
13
14
15
16
17
18
19

Definition

Units

NQualBits value=8
BitCount0
BitCount1
BitCount2
BitCount3
BitCount4
BitCount5
BitCount6
BitCount7

QSA1B : Rotation From Star Camera Frames into SRF


Parameter
Number
11
12
13
14
15
16
17
18
19

Version 1.3

Definition

Units

NQualBits value=8
BitCount0
BitCount1
BitCount2
BitCount3
BitCount4
BitCount5
BitCount6
BitCount7

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VCM1B : Vector offset file for Center of Mass solution from calibration
maneuvers or tracking model in SRF
Parameter
Number
11
12
13
14
15
16
17
18
19

Definition

Units

Minimum
Value

Maximum
Value

Minimum
Value

Maximum
Value

NQualBits value=8
BitCount0
BitCount1
BitCount2
BitCount3
BitCount4
BitCount5
BitCount6
BitCount7

VKB1B : Vector offset for KBR phase centers in SRF


Parameter
Number
11
12
13
14
15
16
17
18
19

Definition

Units

NQualBits value=8
BitCount0
BitCount1
BitCount2
BitCount3
BitCount4
BitCount5
BitCount6
BitCount7

VSL1B : Vector offset file for SLR Corner cube reflector offset in SRF
Parameter
Number
11
12
13
14
15
16
17
18
19

Version 1.3

Definition

Units

Minimum
Value

Maximum
Value

NQualBits value=8
BitCount0
BitCount1
BitCount2
BitCount3
BitCount4
BitCount5
BitCount6
BitCount7

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VGO1B : Vector offset file for GPS Occultation Antenna in SRF
Parameter
Number
11
12
13
14
15
16
17
18
19

Definition

Units

Minimum
Value

Maximum
Value

NQualBits value=8
BitCount0
BitCount1
BitCount2
BitCount3
BitCount4
BitCount5
BitCount6
BitCount7

VGB1B : Vector offset file for GPS Backup Navigation Antenna in SRF
Parameter
Number
11
12
13
14
15
16
17
18
19

Definition

Units

Minimum
Value

Maximum
Value

Minimum
Value

Maximum
Value

NQualBits value=8
BitCount0
BitCount1
BitCount2
BitCount3
BitCount4
BitCount5
BitCount6
BitCount7

VGN1B : Vector offset file for GPS Main Antenna in SRF


Parameter
Number
11
12
13
14
15
16
17
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User Handbook

Appendix C CONTACTS
For questions or comments about the GRACE science data products, please feel free
to email the GRACE Science Data System Team at: grace@podaac.jpl.nasa.gov

For questions or comments about the GRACE data access, please contact:
GRACE Data Products from PO.DAAC
http://podaac.jpl.nasa.gov/grace

Chris Finch
Jet Propulsion Laboratory
Email: finch@jpl.nasa.gov
Phone: 818-354-2390
Fax: 818-393-2718

GRACE Data Products from GFZ/ISDC


http://isdc.gfz-potsdam.de/grace

Bernd Ritschel
GeoForshungsZentrum
Email: rit@gfz-potsdam.de
Phone: +49 331 288 1685

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